A Dictionary of the Older Scottish Tongue (up to 1700)

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Barmkin, Barnkin, n. Also: barmkyn, -kyne, -king; barnekin, -kine, -kyn. [ME. barmeken (14th c.), barnekyn. of obscure origin, perh. an alteration of barbican.] A battlement or battlemented wall; a wall of defence. (a) To fund, big, ande vpmak a toure of fens, with barmkin ande bataling; 1460 Fam. Rose 135.
The Scottis … Thar barmkyn wan, and gret gerrettis kest doun; Wall. viii. 782.
Gret barmkynnys [thai] brak off stedis stark and strang; Ib. 1167.
The barmekin birst, thai enterit in at large; Doug. K. Hart 878.
To big a towr and strenth, with barmkyn, in Inverlochy befor the fest of Martymes; 1508 Reg. Privy S. I. 247/2.
Cum licentia edificandi … vnum castrum, turrim seu fortalicium … cum propugnaculis videlicet le barmkyn; 1509 Antiq. Aberd. & B. IV. 413.
The barmkyn down we rent, And wallis of our cite we maid patent; Doug. ii. iv. 61.
On the barmkyn abufe, and turettis hie; Ib. xi. xvii. 23.
It is statut … that euery landit man … sall big ane sufficient barmkyn … of stane and lyme, contenand thre score futis of the square, ane eln thick and vj elnis heicht [etc.]; 1535 Acts II. 346/1.
All the saidis strenthis, barmkynis and pelis; Ib.
To big and have ane hous within the burgh of Banff of palice wys, with barmking, battelling, etc.; 1537 Reg. Privy S. II. 376/2.
The hous and peill of Westhoussis … with the volt and barmkin thairof; 1567 Reg. Privy C. I. 593.
They wan the fowseis, keist doun the barmekine, and slewe sundre within the said castell; Leslie 92.
The utter barmkin wes won; Ib. 125.
That [he] … caus dimolische … the inner barmkin of the said hous, and the tour upoun the south nuke of the samin; 1579 Reg. Privy C. III. 189.
As for the House of Dwnoveg, I … tooke there watter and the two barmkines from them; 1615 Highland P. III. 265.
We ȝeid in at the vtter barmkin … , but they closed the ȝett of the inner barmkin; Ib. 267.
(b) The distruccioune & dovnecasting of the toune, housis, barnekyn, strenthis & fortalices; 1501 Acta Conc. MS. X. 152 b.
[Charge had been given for] leddering the barnekin [by night]; 1600 Reg. Privy C. VI. 87.

b. In figurative uses. Baith barmekyn and bar to Scottis blud [thai] bene; Howlat 384.
He brak the barmekyn of that bribour bla; Dunb. lxxxvi. 30.
The twynklyng stremowris of the orient … Persand the sabill barmkyn nocturnall; Doug. xii. Prol. 23.
Aurora haid the heawens ourcled Vith celest air from blak Nocturna sched Throch percing purpur barmkin of the sky; J. Stewart 201 § 4.

c. Attrib. with dyke, hede, wall. Ivé levys rank ourspred the barmkyn wall; Doug. xii. Prol. 97.
Sum … schutis dartis … At thame quhilkis on the barmkyn hede remanys; Ib. x. 64.
The Castelle hes beine fowr quarters, … withe ane gryt barmkine wale passand fra towre to towre; c 1563 Reg. Panmure I. p. cxliii.
Be thair frequent casting of stanes ouer the barnkin dyke of the said place, thay hurte … Marioun Maitland; 1585 Reg. Privy C. IV. 24.
Our folkis … brashte it [the castle] sa sair, that the vtter barnkin wal tha wan in haist; Dalr. II. 193/16;
Ib. 288/24.
[Thay] come to the Place of Boningtoune, and thair thifteouslie clam the barnekyn wall with ane ladder; 1601 Crim. Trials II. 347.

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"Barmkin n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 6 Dec 2021 <https://www.dsl.ac.uk/entry/dost/barmkin>

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